‘Star Wars’ headed to TV as weekly series

June 23rd, 2018

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Thursday, August 4, 2005

At the Siggraph 2005 computer graphics convention in Los Angeles, California Tuesday, Star Wars creator George Lucas unveiled plans for a weekly computer-animated series based on the science fiction saga.

The new show, to be called Clone Wars, will be a 3-D animated spinoff of the series and is to be produced in a Lucas facility in Singapore. Lucas already has done limited-run 2-D traditional animated television with Star Wars: Clone Wars shorts on the U.S. cable channel, Cartoon Network.

Lucas said advances in digital technology allow an animated television series to do what otherwise would be too expensive.

Altered HIV a potential cancer treatment?

June 23rd, 2018

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Wednesday, February 16, 2005

At UCLA, a team of researchers has developed a harmless version of HIV that is designed to seek out, and potentially destroy, cancer cells.

In a laboratory-mouse experiment, the treated cells headed directly for melonoma and lung cancer cells, clustering around them with a surprising level of intuitiveness. Gene therapy for cancer has been at an impasse for the last 20 years, said the team, but now an effective carrier has been found in the most unlikely of sources. Essentially, one of the world’s largest health threats is now being considered to fight another.

Says Dr. Irvin Chen, from UCLA’s AIDS Institute, “The disarmed AIDS virus acts like a Trojan horse, transporting therapeutic agents to a targeted part of the body, such as the lungs, where tumors often spread.”

First the virus’s coating is removed and the virus is reprogrammed so that it recognizes and attaches to the p-lipoproteins of a cancer cell, one of cancer’s primary defenses. The retro-virus was also altered with a fluorescent protein for easy tracking within the lab mice. The next step will be to graft a cancer-killing gene onto the modified AIDS virus’s genetic structure.

Currently, a case of melanoma skin cancer spreading to the lungs is a confirmed death sentence. Should this method of treatment improve into a workable treatment, both life-threatening cancers and the AIDS retro-virus could be effectively neutered. But the team cautions that the treatment is in the very early stages and will take several more years to develop.

Author Amy Scobee recounts abuse as Scientology executive

June 23rd, 2018

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Monday, October 11, 2010

Wikinews interviewed author Amy Scobee about her book Scientology – Abuse at the Top, and asked her about her experiences working as an executive within the organization. Scobee joined the organization at age 14, and worked at Scientology’s international management headquarters for several years before leaving in 2005. She served as a Scientology executive in multiple high-ranking positions, working out of the international headquarters of Scientology known as “Gold Base”, located in Gilman Hot Springs near Hemet, California.

Ethics debate surrounds surgery to stunt disabled girl’s growth

June 22nd, 2018

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Friday, January 5, 2007

An ethical controversy has surged in the United States and elsewhere around nine-year-old Ashley X (her family name has not been released). The disabled girl was operated upon at the request of her parents, to prevent her from growing, menstruating and developing breasts. The parents, who wish to remain anonymous, explain their situation on a blog entitled The “Ashley Treatment”. There have been over 1000 reactions on the blog so far.

Ashley suffers a condition termed static encephalopathy with marked global developmental deficits of unknown etiology, which means brain damage of unknown cause leading to a kind of static condition. She can make sounds, move her arms and kick her legs, but she cannot change her position, eat, walk, talk etc. Many of these children are in poor health and die young, but Ashley is in good health. For all of these functions she depends on her caregivers. Most of the day she passes watching her surrounding, lying on a pillow. Her parents call her their “Pillow Angel”, “since she is so sweet and stays right where we place her—usually on a pillow.”


Ashley can continue to delight in being held in our arms and will be moved and taken on trips more frequently and will have more exposure to activities and social gatherings.

-Ashley’s Mom and Dad

Ashley’s parents want to keep her at home and care for her themselves, and they want to guarantee their daughter’s quality of life. To this end, they say, Ashley underwent several surgical procedures and medical treatments during a period of three years. To attenuate her growth, Ashley was given high doses of the hormone estrogen. Ashley now measures 4ft 5 (1m 35cm) and weighs around 75 lbs (34 kg), which is below her expected length and weight. Her low body weight and size would improve her comfort, and at the same time facilitate the work of her caregivers.

Surgery to remove her uterus (a procedure called a hysterectomy) and breast buds were performed, so Ashley does not menstruate and will not develop breasts, both of which parents think only would cause her discomfort. Since high estrogen levels can cause menstrual bleeding and breast development, the surgery was also meant to limit these effects. She also underwent surgery to remove her appendix, because it would be difficult to diagnose appendicitis given Ashley’s low communication possibilities.

National Hockey League news: February 29, 2008

National Hockey League news: February 29, 2008

June 22nd, 2018

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Friday, February 29, 2008

There were 7 games played in the National Hockey League on February 28, 2008. The Penguins, with their newly acquired Marian Hossa face the Bruins, the Senators take the ice for the first time since their head coach was fired, and the Flyers try to get their second straight win after a 10 game losing streak.


  • 1 Game summaries
    • 1.1 Pittsburgh Penguins @ Boston Bruins
    • 1.2 Ottawa Senators @ Philadelphia Flyers
    • 1.3 New York Rangers @ Carolina Hurricanes
    • 1.4 New York Islanders @ Atlanta Thrashers
    • 1.5 Phoenix Coyotes @ St. Louis Blues
    • 1.6 Chicago Blackhawks @ Dallas Stars
    • 1.7 Los Angeles Kings @ Edmonton Oilers
  • 2 Wikinews Player of the Day
  • 3 Sources

An interview with Jimbo Wales/Color-free

An interview with Jimbo Wales/Color-free

June 22nd, 2018

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Wednesday, February 22, 2006

This article mentions the Wikimedia Foundation, one of its projects, or people related to it. Wikinews is a project of the Wikimedia Foundation.

Just five years ago, when Jimbo Wales founded Wikipedia, the project’s goal of 100,000 articles [1] seemed ambitious. Yet today, the project, now one of the top 25 websites in the world according to Alexa, is nearing closer 1,000,000 articles in English, and 3.5 million articles across all languages. This week, we interviewed Jimbo Wales.

Colored version

Wikinews: Raul654 asks: “Recently, there were revelations about organized attempts by US Congressmen to whitewash their articles. What is your take on this, as well as earlier reports of Corporate astroturfing?”

Jimbo Wales: The question is invalid. There were no revelations of organized attempts by US Congressmen to whitewash their articles. Not any evidence of “corporate astroturfing” of which I am aware. There was evidence that some congressional staffers edited Wikipedia in inappropriate ways. But the internal evidence of the type and style of these edits do not suggest “organized attempts”.

WN: Nichalp asks: “Budget permitting, are there any plans to increase the number of Wikipedia servers, specifically into the less developed countries?”

JW: We are always buying new servers. There are no specific plans to add servers in less developed countries, but we have looked into it as a possibility. We are particularly interested in doing so if it helps increase access and reduce costs for those users.

WN: An anonymous reader asks: “How much of a role do you feel the Wikipedia community (and the communities of its sister projects) should have in the running of the Wikimedia Foundation? Do you see an increasing separation of the organization from the projects? If so, do you regard that as beneficial or a potential problem?”

JW: The community has always been and will always be absolutely crucial to the running of the Wikimedia Foundation. We are increasing the community input and activity in the foundation through a new series of committees to delegate things to community members which have traditionally been handled by me or the Board. I do not see any increasing separation of the organization from the projects, quite the opposite. I consider the increasing integration of the community and the foundation as overwhelmingly beneficial.

WN: ALoan asks: “English Wikipedia is approaching 1 million articles, but less than 1 in a thousand are Featured articles. The list of featured articles English Wikipedia should have has few featured articles, and recent surveys of articles chosen at random show that many articles are poorly written. How can we get from here to an encyclopedia of well-written articles? Or should we not worry too much about coverage and content?”

JW: We should be tightly focused on the quality of our coverage and content. The goal of Wikipedia is to create and distribute a freely licensed high quality encyclopedia. The path to that goal will require us to be flexible and thoughtful. The first steps will come soon with the article review system, which will initially be used simply to gather data. After we have data, we can begin to work on how we will focus our attention to improve quality.

WN: GeorgeStepanek asks: “You’ve said that ‘Wikimedia’s mission is to give the world’s knowledge to every single person on the planet in their own language.’ But very few of the wikipedias in the languages of third-world countries are seeing as much activity as the first-world language wikipedias. Do you have any ideas on how this could be turned around?”

JW: I am a believer in outreach. I would like for the Foundation to raise money specifically to pay one or more minority language co-ordinators. The goal would be to reach out in a more organized way to professors and graduate students and expat communities who have good Internet access, to seed projects for languages where the majority of speakers have poor internet access.

WN: Jacoplane asks: “How do you feel we will be able to reach Wikipedia 1.0? The tools currently available for vetting our articles are crude at best. The Featured article process seems too slow, and the article validation feature seems to have died a quiet death. Are you planning a big push on this front?”

JW: Isn’t that the same question as the quality question? The article validation feature has not died a quiet death at all.

WN: Quadell asks: “Most important decisions on Wikimedia projects are handled with consensus. However, we sometimes have to deal with legal issues, especially related to copyright law. For instance, we as a community may need to decide whether to consider a certain use “fair”, or how to deal with conflicting copyright claims. Dealing with this through consensus is problematic, since we can’t do something illegal even if there is widespread misguided support for it. In general, how can we as a community deal with these issues?”

JW: I don’t think there is any real problem with this. The community is strongly in support of following the law. I don’t know of any particular cases of widespread misguided support for something illegal. In particular cases, there can of course be [dis]agreement, but I have never seen anyone in the community argue that we should not listen to the advice of our legal team.

WN: Raul654 asks: “Where do you see Wikipedia in 10 years?”

JW: I don’t know. My favorite answer to this is to say, the real question is: where will the world be after 10 more years of Wikipedia. 🙂 Seriously, I think we’ll eventually see a tapering off of new article creation in the large language wikipedias as more and more “verifiable” topics are covered. At this point, most changes will be expansions and updates and quality improvements to existing articles. But in 10 years, it seems likely to me that many languages which are now quite small will have very large Wikipedia projects. Our community will continue to become more diverse as more and more people worldwide come online.

WN: Kevin Myers asks: “The values reflected in certain Wikipedia policies (anti-censorship, neutral point-of-view) are problematic in cultures where freedom of expression is limited, as the blocking of Wikipedia in mainland China and arguably the Muhammad cartoons controversy attest. As Wikipedia expands internationally, do you foresee Wikipedia becoming increasingly controversial in countries where “Western values” are seen as a potential threat?”

JW: I don’t think that neutrality and objectivity are really controversial among most people of the world. It is true that the leadership in some places does not value these things, and may actually work against these things, but we can not deviate from our goals to accommodate them.

WN: On a similar topic, Vsion asks: “Are there currently any efforts being undertaken by the Foundation to address the People’s Republic of China’s blocking of Wikipedia or to alleviate its effect?”

JW: Beijing-area Wikipedians are working to have the block lifted. Our position is that the block is in error, even given China’s normal policies. Wikipedia is not propaganda, it is basic information. We expect that the block will be lifted.

WN: David.Monniaux asks: “The Foundation receives daily accusations of libel from semi-well-known people who have an entry on Wikipedia or are mentioned in some Wikipedia entry. What do you propose? Would a strict application of the rule of citing controversial claims suffice, in your opinion?”

JW: Yes. I think that our current systems do a good job of addressing these sorts of complaints, although it is very time-consuming for us here in the office. What really works wonders is a very strict application of the rule of citing controversial claims particularly relating to biographies of living persons. The new policy on biographies of living persons is a very strong step in the right direction.

WN: Tony Sidaway asks: “In the past six weeks the number of userboxes on English Wikipedia has risen from 3500 to 6000 and, despite your appeals for restraint, the number pertaining to political beliefs has risen from 45 to 150. Can the problem of unsuitable userboxes still be resolved by debate?”

JW: My only comment on the userbox situation is that the current situation is not acceptable.

WN: Larsinio asks: “How can Wikipedia effectively explain to the public its open-contribution model without simultaneously worrying the public about inaccurate information?”

JW: I think we do a reasonably good job of that. The best thing is to point to our overall quality while at the same time pointing out that we are currently a work in progress. Over time, this answer will change as we move toward ‘1.0’. At that time, we can point to ‘1.0’ for those who are made nervous by the live editing.

WN: Rob Church asks: “Do you consider the encyclopedia to be ‘finished’? Do you think it ever can be?”

JW: Nothing is ever finished. Human knowledge is always growing.

WN: Raul654 and Pavel Vozenilek both asked, “What kind of cool new features/announcements can we expect to see in the next year or two?”

JW: I think this question is too hard for me to answer. I almost never “announce” anything, and features are developed publicly by the community. I think other people have a better idea than I do what will happen in the next year or two. 🙂 Ask Brion [Vibber].

WN: Celestianpower asks: “If you had not founded Wikipedia, and had just been referred to it by a friend, how active a contributor do you think you would be?”

JW: [I] dream fondly of such a scenario. I might actually get to edit articles then. Instead of spend the morning (this morning) documenting transactions and taking phone calls.

WN: OpenToppedBus asks: “The last fundraising drive was less successful than had been anticipated. Do you see a shortage of money holding back Wikipedia/Wikimedia in the short-to-medium-term, and are there any plans to bring in income from sources other than individual donations?”

JW: The last fundraising drive was more successful than had been anticipated, by a long shot. It was the most successful fund drive in our history. [Regarding a quoted goal of $500,000], Mav wrote something like that somewhere, in a scratchpad kind of way. That number was just a placeholder and had nothing to do with me or the official view of the foundation. He’s apologized repeatedly for it.

WN: Thryduulf asks: “What is your single greatest wish for Wikipedia?”

JW: I would have to just point back to our original goal: a freely licensed high quality encyclopedia for every single person on the planet. That’s what I remain focused on daily.

This exclusive interview features first-hand journalism by a Wikinews member. See the talk page for more details. Interviews are translated through WORTNET.

Chicago apartment fire kills six children

Chicago apartment fire kills six children

June 22nd, 2018

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Monday, September 4, 2006

Six children aged between 3 and 14 died early Sunday in an apartment fire on the 7700 block of Marshfield Ave on the north side of Chicago, IL. The fire also injured the victims’ mother and three other siblings. Authorities say that candles are suspected as the cause, and that the apartment had had no electricity since May.

The three-bedroom apartment on the third-floor did not have a smoke detector, officials say. Commonwealth Edison spokesman John Edison declined to comment on why the electricity was turned off for the apartment.

Fire Commissioinor Raymond Orozco told the media, “This is the largest multiple fire fatality we’ve had from a single fire in quite a few years. I mean it’s children. It’s difficult for everyone involved.”

Witness Cmdr. Will Knight said, “The mother came running out with one child in her arms, screaming to the neighbors that there were other children inside.”

Fire Department spokesman Larry Langford said that the children were found in the front room, huddled not far from where the fire started. He added that the fire broke out shortly after midnight.

Witness Al Tillman, 32, said that he was visiting a friend when he heard the children cry for help. He ran up to the third floor, where he managed to grab a boy’s arm and drag him out to the waiting paramedics.

Tillman said, “I’m shaken up because the other children didn’t make it. I only heard one child. I wish I could have saved the others.”

One man said that he and several others tried to get into the building, but the intense heat forced them to turn around.

Later, people held a blanket under one of the apartment’s windows, asking them to jump down. Firefighters retrieved the children remaining by ladder.

The mother is hospitalized with three other children. The Court County’s medical examiner indentified the children as Vanessa Ramirez, 14; Eric Ramirez, 12; Suzette Ramirez, 10; Idaly Ramirez, 6; Kevin Ramirez, 3; and Escarlet Ramos, 3. Escarlet Ramos has been listed as living at a different address, but details regarding this have not been revealed.

Complaints lodged, police helpless as “boobs on bikes” parade happens in New Zealand

Complaints lodged, police helpless as “boobs on bikes” parade happens in New Zealand

June 21st, 2018

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Friday, March 2, 2007

The following article contains photographs of women’s exposed breasts. Viewer discretion is advised.

Today the “boobs on bikes” parade was held in Christchurch, New Zealand.

The boobs on bikes parade happens in various centres around New Zealand and is designed to kick off, and promote the Erotica Expo.

This parade caught less national media attention before the parade than the Auckland one last year as, unlike Auckland, there was no protest done by the city councillors.

The Christchurch City Council released a press statement stating that they had “not approved or received an application to hold the proposed “Boobs on Bikes” parade on Friday, 2 March, from Erotica event organisers.”

The press release stated that the council must be consulted for any procession that will interfere with traffic, or may require crowd management. Erotica Festival organiser Steve Crowe has brushed this off, saying that it is a promotion, not a parade, and all rules of the road will be observed.

City council and organizers of the event say they have received numerous complaints about the parade, however it isn’t in the city’s jurisdiction to act, as female toplessness is not illegal.

Council transport and streets manager Michael Aitken told NZPA that the “standard of dress of participants is not a matter that the council can control.”

Police inspector Gary Knowles commented that it was a “moral not a criminal issue. We have taken legal advice and unless there is a breach of the peace, we cannot intervene.”

Wikinews reporter Gabriel Pollard was at the parade to catch the action.

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Dog flu spreads across the US

Dog flu spreads across the US

June 21st, 2018

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Saturday, October 15, 2005

Dogs are normally resistant to most flu strains. Since about 2000, a new strain of dog flu has been spreading in America, and there’s no vaccine to prevent it.

To limit exposure to the flu, some dog owners are avoiding public places like dog shows and parks. Since the flu can spread where groups of dogs are housed, some dog owners are nervous about the practice of putting their pets in kennels. According to Edward Dubovil, director of the animal virology lab at Cornell University, 100% of dogs appear to be susceptible to infection by this new flu strain. It is estimated that 1-5% of infected dogs are dying from this flu strain. The symptoms of dog flu are akin to those of kennel cough, a more common and less serious illness.

Starting in 2004 there have been many outbreaks of flu at dog race tracks. Since early in 2004, researchers have been working to characterize the type of flu that is infecting dogs. In September of 2005 it was reported that this dog flu strain had crossed over from horses to dogs. This type of flu virus has been infecting horses for at least 40 years. It is expected that existing flu vaccines for horses can soon be adapted for use in dogs.

The spread of a horse flu virus to dogs is an example of what could happen with bird flu. Currently the bird flu is transmitted from birds to humans but does not spread easily from person to person. The new strain of dog flu shows signs of having been genetically modified from the original horse-preferring virus strain making it easy to transmit from dog to dog. Future genetic modifications of bird flu could better adapt it to humans and allow it to spread from person to person. The chance of such viral evolution can be reduced by limiting exposure of humans to bird flu.

At this time, the new dog flu virus strain does not seem to be a danger for humans. However, humans will be monitored for signs of infection by new genetic variants of the dog flu. Due to the close physical association between pet dogs and humans, a flu strain that could jump from dogs to humans would be of great concern. Recently evolved virus strains that jump from one species to another are often particularly lethal because the newly infected species may have little or no immunity to the new virus strain.

Having A Baby Shower

June 20th, 2018

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Having a Baby Shower


Don Pinder

Wow, you have just found out that you are pregnant and the world seems like a much happier place. Everyone says that you are glowing and you feel amazing. Soon it will come time for your friends and family to throw a baby shower for you in honour of the bump you have been growing. The actual time to have a baby shower is not specific, but people tend to have one quite close to the due date – do not leave it for too long though because you could always be early. At ebaymaternity.co.uk we have a fantastic stock of baby shower goodies to make your party that much better.

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The mom to be shouldn’t know anything about the day, so sisters, moms or best friends, this one is for you. At ebaymaterntiy.co.uk you can browse through our range of invitations. When you choose one, you can decide to make them pink for the mom or if you know the gender of the baby, it will be a good idea to use blue invitations or ones that mention a boy. This will immediately stand out and remind people to purchase gifts for a boy or girl. At ebaymeternity.co.uk we also have a great selection of gifts that will make the day so special. If you want to tell people what to bring, the handprint or footprint moulds are so adorable and will last a lifetime. A baby’s first diary is a popular choice and a pregnancy belly moulding kit is a great option for those that want something unique and fun. A baby shower is all about fun and games so we have stocked a wonderful set of games that are geared towards baby showers like the baby shower bingo or the scratch card favours. If you are at a loss as to what to buy for a new mom, then here are some great ideas that ebaymaternity.co.uk has for you: baby’s first shower which is a stick on toy shower head, a stylish mom to be charm bracelet, baby clothes that are custom made, blankets and sheets, baby’s first Christmas gift pack, and baby’s first teddy or bunny. These are just some of the products we offer that would make ideal gifts for an expecting mom. The baby shower will also need some special items to make it special like a baby shower registry so that all your guests can write in it and wish you well. You can get a rosette saying “It’s a girl” or “It’s a boy” and there are funny nappy cakes that you can have for your guests. Enjoy.

Copyright and Disclaimer:

The information provided in the above article is owned and presented by Don Pinder for http://ebaymaternity.co.uk. This information is made freely available to the public for distribution on websites and other platforms, provided that the links pertaining to http://ebaymaternity.co.uk are not changed or removed in any way.

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